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This qualifications has been developed by NTIDPU and Inquest Canine Detection & Security Limited to meet the National Occupational Standards (NOS’s) for a Security Detection Dog Handler and the training requirements contained within BS 8517-2:2016, (in that) it is an assessment of the learners (handlers) ability to read the indications given by a dog and to meet the required performance criteria. 


Through our operational experiences within the detection dog private sector, and by taking direction and guidance from the NTIPDU, we believe our course to be amongst the most informative in the industry and is designed to contribute towards the required skill set, knowledge and understanding needed to effectively deploy a detection dog in an operational environment.  Our course will include classroom and scenario based learning which will teach the students how to effectively work their canine partner in a variety of environments to include:

  • Vehicle Searches

  • Building Searches

  • Open Area Searches

  • Persons Searches (Passive or Dual Purpose course Only)

  • Residential property searches

  • Workplace environments

Awarding Body


Skills For Security – An awarding organisation approved by the Regulatory Authority OFQUAL and recognised by the SIA


Level 3 – Certificate


Course Duration


Training would be delivered over 4 weeks and would be of sufficient duration to ensure competency, having a minimum of 100 guided learning hours (GLH’s) for the handler and an extra 100 hours for the dog. 


GLH’s are recorded hours of direct training, structured learning and assessment given to an individual learner by their tutor and not the duration of a course.


Programme Structure


The programme is flexible with a mixture of theory and practical tuition and is made up of 5 units all of which are compulsory (see content).


Prior Learning


All learners should hold an appropriate S.I.A. licence (unless exempt) and should be trained and competent in a Door Supervisor role or willing to undergo additional Sia license training. If you do not hold the SIA license the badge would cost £220 which is payable directly to the SIA.  An SIA license training course can be arranged through our partners at the NTIPDU with the cost of that training being payable directly to them.


The learner should be competent in the handling of a dog.  The dog should possess the suitable drives required for its role and have had basic obedience training.


Learners who have proven drug detection dog handling experience as a Police or Prison Officer or a Member of HM Armed Forces within the last 5 years may apply for accreditation of prior learning (APL).  A minimum of 15 GLH’s shall be required for final assessment and examination and to confirm understanding of the private security industry dog sector.




Course assessment shall be of the team and carried out by an Approved NTIPDU Instructor/Trainer; internal moderation shall be carried out by NTIPDU.  External moderation shall be carried out by Skills For Security.


The mode of assessment shall be by ongoing practical assessment, by question and answer sessions by a written examination and final practical examination.


Final assessment/examination regarding the indication of target scents shall be carried out by a suitably qualified examiner (i.e. NTIPDU) that does not have an interest in the learner passing the qualification.




Certificate(s) shall be for the handler and also as a Team i.e. handler and dog




The successful learner can proceed onto a variety of dog detection work including Pro-active Drug Detection, Explosive Detection or into Dog Training.




Unit 1 (20 GLH)


Roles and Responsibilities of a Passive Drug Detection Dog Handler


Underpinning Knowledge


Unit 2 (10 GLH)










Unit 3 (50 GLH)


Operational Control


Prior Assessment


Scanning for Narcotics


Indication of Narcotics




Unit 4 (10 GLH)


Health & Safety


Health & Safety Assessment




Load & Unload


Emergency First Aid


Unit 5 (10 GLH)




Operational Management


Storage, Use and Transportation


Progression of Training


I've tried to include as much info as possible, sorry it's a bit much!


Payment is due on the first day of training.  Deposit may be required.  Accommodation is not included in the course fee, but may be available or help given to find accommodation for the duration of training.  The course for the handler can be flexible in times to fit in with your current work pattern, for example Mon - Fri evening then Sat & Sun days.

POA - Please contact Dean on 07516 105428 or email